How Herpes is Transmitted

Herpes is a viral infection categorized as a sexually transmitted disease. Six herpes virus are known to affect the human body, but only two of these can make an enduring mark—the herpes simplex 1 or HSV-1 and herpes simplex 2 or HSV-2. The existence of the former is more common and mostly indicated by cold sores in the mouth. The latter on the other hand can be found in the genital area and is characterized by sores and blisters.

Contrary to popular assumption, herpes is not a disease exclusive to sexually adventurous people. In fact, it is estimated that about 45 to 50 million people in the United States are infected with genital herpes. Even if a couple enjoys a monogamous relationship for years, there is a possibility that one or both have already been infected by the virus through their former partners without them knowing it.

herpes transmitted kissingPeople saying that there is a cure for herpes are doing sweet talk. The truth is, once a person catches the virus, he or she will have to live with it for a lifetime. Medications to control the symptoms of the disease like sores outbreaks however are available. There are also supplements that can help infected people to reduce the risk of transmitting the virus to their partner.

Herpes is transmitted through physical or sexual contact with a person infected with herpes. This includes kissing, oral sex, and obviously, genital and anal sex. Exchange of body fluids is regardless as long as there’s a body contact. When a person does oral sex to an infected partner, he or she may develop cold sores in the mouth. When a person is given oral sex by an infected partner, he or she may get sores in the genitals. Contrary to the belief, a person can both have mouth and genital herpes.

Touching his or her infected genitals and then touching the uninfected mouth can spread the infection. People who have just been transmitted with the virus may experience fever and having swollen glands. As mentioned, the most visible signs of herpes are cold sores in the mouth and the blisters in the genitals. These blisters give a painful sensation and sometimes covered with pus. The frequency of sore outbreaks will decrease from time to time, but the virus will forever stay in the body.

herpes labialisSeveral medications and treatments have been produced and develop to alleviate the lives of people with herpes. These can decrease and even prevent sore outbreaks. Some treatments can even reduce the chances of transmitting the virus to partners.

People who have herpes are stigmatized by the society, but this situation is gradually changing as more people are becoming aware of the prevalence of the disease. Whatever other people say, note that everyone deserves a happy sex life, and this is still possible by practicing safe sex. It is just important to avoid sexual intercourse during an outbreak, always use condoms for penetrative sex, and wear dental dams for deep kissing and oral sex.




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